In NTQ15 (1988) Catherine Boyle surveyed the paradoxically rich variety of theatrical practices that have come to life in Chile under conditions of extreme hardship since the military takeover of 1973. She concluded that ‘there is more to be said about Chilean theatre and other interpretations to be made’. The following piece puts forward one such interpretation, by examining some of those practices in terms of the larger social and political questions at stake, and by drawing theatrical and historical parallels between the work of the two most important dramatists of the period – Juan Radrigán and Marco Antonio de la Parra – and the work and thought of Piscator. This article was written well before the developments that have brought Chile to the brink of a re-establishment of some kind of democracy, with the elections of December 1989 won by the opposition to Pinochet: but it still reaches an optimistic conclusion, which we can only hope is borne out by events. Enzo Cozzi is a Chilean who came to exile in Britain in the aftermath of the military coup. He now teaches in the Department of Drama at Royal Holloway and Bedford New College. University of London, and runs a puppet theatre company. Travesura, devoted to Latin American popular culture.